10,000 flying hours make Victoria Police AW139 fleet No 1 in world

Victoria Police’s helicopter fleet, supplied and supported by StarFlight Victoria, has marked 10,000 hours in the air keeping the community safe.

13 July 2023


The force’s three highly advanced AW139 helicopters, which were delivered by StarFlight Victoria three years ago, are ranked at number one for flying hours, out of the 114 Leonardo AW139’s currently serving law enforcement around the world.

Victoria Police choppers have flown more than 1.1 million nautical miles.

They have been deployed to more than 30,000 tasks since taking to the skies, played a crucial role in Victoria Police making more than 3000 arrests and specialised crews have completed more than 60 winching tasks.

The aircraft are fitted with advanced infrared cameras and mapping systems, as well as object detection software, which assists with marine and land-based searches.

Behind the success of the 10,000hrs, is a team of dedicated and experienced StarFlight Victoria engineers working 24/7 to keep the helicopters serviceable, ensuring availability and reliability to Victoria Police.  

For every flying hour, five hours of engineering manpower is required by the team which works on various aspects of helicopter engineering including structural, mechanical and avionics.

50,000 engineering hours have been clocked up, including 34 Heavy Maintenance Inspections and eight modification requests.

There have been 50 Main Tyre changes and a total of 1090 litres of oil used for the engines and gear boxes.

“The contribution these helicopters and the support team behind them, make to Victoria Police Air Wing’s capabilities is incredibly significant,” said StarFlight Victoria Director Ashley van de Velde.

“StarFlight Victoria is proud to have delivered what has proven itself to be the best example of a multi-role police helicopter fleet anywhere in the world.” 

The helicopters are able to seat three times as many people as those previously flown by Victoria Police.

This enables the rapid deployment of specialist police to regional areas when a major incident occurs.

Victoria Police’s Air Wing celebrated the extraordinary record of its helicopters and their crews, with a special gathering at its Essendon Fields Airport headquarters this week.

Acting Deputy Commissioner Bob Hill, Assistant Commissioner Dean McWhirter, StarFlight Victoria Directors Hon. Rob Borbidge AO and Brett Quarrell were among the guests.

Victoria Police aviators and the specialist engineers joined them in marking the 10,000-hour milestone. 

StarFlight was created by Australian companies LifeFlight and the Linfox Group, combining aviation experience and infrastructure with an unparalleled capability for logistic supply and support.


"This milestone reflects the collective effort from Victoria Police and StarFlight.  I take this opportunity to congratulate everybody who has played their part and acknowledge the successful relationship between Victoria Police and StarFlight Victoria."

Mr van de Velde


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